Even in My Dad’s Final Weeks, I Was Still in Denial

A cartoonist depicts a difficult time with honesty and emotion

Editor’s note: This is the fourth installment of cartoonist Jack Ohman’s series “The Care Package,” for PBS NewsHour.  It originally appeared on PBSNewsHour.org.

When editorial cartoonist Jack Ohman’s father only had days left to live, he still wrote checks to pay his bills and recorded his blood pressure readings.

Meanwhile, everything with his dad’s health seemed to suddenly go wrong at once, he said.

He was completely coherent and optimistic, but his body was “weak and worn out,” Ohman said.

“That made it almost harder because I had to discuss it with him, like ‘What are we going to try next?’” Ohman said.

“By that point, it didn’t matter. I knew it didn’t matter.”

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Reporting by Laura Santhanam.


By Jack Ohman
Jack Ohman joined The Sacramento Bee in 2013. He previously worked at the Oregonian, the Detroit Free Press and the Columbus Dispatch. His work is syndicated to more than 200 newspapers by Tribune Media Services. Jack has won the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, the Scripps Foundation Award and the national SPJ Award, and he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2012. Contact Jack at johman@sacbee.com.@jackohman

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